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these are days - Ambar
February 16th, 2002
10:17 pm

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these are days
One fine way to kick off a solo weekend is to come home Friday evening (the train a half-hour late) to an Amazon box lying seductively on the doorstep. Note to self: it is always good to ensure that there is one heat-and-eat meal in the 'fridge before going off via train, because getting home tired and hungry at 8:50pm is just not conducive to any serious acts of gourmet creativity. Fortunately for me, the last slab of pork roast was waiting patiently, and the books didn't mind sharing.

Today's big adventure was opening a new bank account. RIP Wingspan. Alas, BankOne has done a poorish job of pulling the Wingspan customers into their own online framework. Even that might not have chased me off so fast (face it, switching banks is a giant pain in the patoot), but I no longer live the life of the direct-deposit leech, and mailing in checks has just gotten too annoying. I want facetime. So, after some cursory Gomez research, off I went.

Ten years ago (plus a month or six weeks), I had just moved (back) to California and started working for Cygnus after nine (emotionally trying) months of unemployment in Boston. First paycheck in hand, I went off to open a bank account, at the same bank Cygnus used, because it was within walking distance and why not? Because, the bank called two days later to say, my credit record was unacceptably bad, and please come back and get your check.

That stuck with me, somehow, so I had a full appreciation of the irony in sitting down with Ms. Kim at Citibank after four months of unemployment self-employment, first consulting paycheck in hand, and being approved on the spot for all sorts of helpful things, notably four figures worth of overdraft protection. (And, lo the fine print! they will refund four foreign ATM fees a month, because there isn't a branch within 40 miles of my house. Shades of Wingspan again.)

But the most interesting revelation was when we wrestled over, first, my business phone number (she wanted a landline), and then my employer's name. "I'm a consultant," I said. "I don't work in a fixed location. The cell number is it." "Self-employed," she said, and carried on with the form. It's a single-syllable change, from unemployed to self-employed, but internally it was a Very Big Deal. I am not working for a particular corporation (big or small), identifying with it. I'm working for myself. And, um, wow.

I felt like the universe had been pouring cream on my head, and I'd only just noticed. <washes paws>

Current Mood: amusedamused
Current Music: Natalie Merchant

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[User Picture]
From:bumblepudding
Date:February 17th, 2002 08:59 am (UTC)

Re: these are days

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You go, Computer Girl. We, the unemployed, salute you.
[User Picture]
From:mizkit
Date:February 18th, 2002 09:42 pm (UTC)
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That *is* a big deal! Woot Ambar! Woot!
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